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China Guardian Hong Kong Spring Auctions 2021 will take place from 18 to 23 April at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre. The sale series will showcase a wide array of artworks and collectibles from around the world, including Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy, Asian 20th Century and Contemporary Art and Ceramics and Works of Art, offering nearly 1,300 lots. Prior to the Spring Auctions, Jewellery Watches and Luxury Goods offers a target-oriented private selling exhibition “LUMIÈRE” along with the Spring Auctions Preview at China Guardian (HK) G Art Gallery on 5th floor of Lippo Centre from 18 to 31 March. China Guardian (HK) will also introduce the live auction platform for art lovers to bid online.
Ms. Hu Yanyan, President of China Guardian (HK) Auctions Co., Ltd., says, “Greetings to you all and wishing everyone a glorious Spring! Looking back at the past year, the world was in search of breakthroughs in the midst of the unknown. China Guardian was also seeking for consolidation and innovation, as we were able to break through geographic boundaries by technology and achieved exceptional auction results. China Guardian Hong Kong Spring Auctions will soon take place at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre this April, and we look forward to joining hands with you at this cultural destination to set new records and start a fresh chapter in 2021!”
CHINESE PAINTINGS AND CALLIGRAPHY
The flagship sale of ‘Fine Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy’ will offer over 280 spectacular artworks sourced from all over the globe.
Lin Yutang: Manuscript Collection
This Spring, China Guardian is pleased to present the latest edition of ‘Lin Yutang: Manuscript Collections’, a series that has been in the spotlight for two seasons since the Spring Auctions in 2020. We are honoured to be entrusted by a collector this season who offered the entire collection of Lin Yutang’s manuscripts. The auction target features 477 manuscripts of over 678 pages by Lin Yutang, as well as 115 pages of letters by Lin’s wife and friends during 1948 and 1976. Considering the amount and time span of the works, this is the most prominent collection of its kind that has ever appeared at auction. As the most precious historical sources of Lin Yutang studies, the collection provides a glimpse of Lin Yutang’s academic focuses, social activities and emotional life after 1949.
Private Collections and Special Sessions
The upcoming auction will offer a number of private collections and special themed sessions, comprising works that are fresh to the market. This season, we are honoured to bring to the market treasures from Lingnan School from the ‘Cheng Lan Tang Collection’, including the works of Gao Jianfu, Zhao Shao’ang and Yang Shanshen. One of the features is Yang Shanshen’s Cat painted in 1951; a painting that is full of tension which best captures the movements of a cat amidst flowers painted with ink and colour. We are also thrilled to present ‘Mr. Guozhen's Collection of Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy’, a series of works collected by Mr. Guozhen over the past decades, including Flowers by Pan Tianshou painted in 1965, a time when his art flourished between mid-1950s and mid-1960s. With the stalk and the flower each representing a beautiful ornament to the other, Flowers best showcases Pan Tianshou’s artistic achievements as well as the spectacular beauty of Chinese paintings and calligraphy. ‘Chang Sheng Tang's Collection of Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy’ presents various masterpieces by Zhang Daqian, Huang Binhong, Qi Baishi, Li Keran among others, amassed by a collector who has engaged in trades with China for over forty years, when he frequently purchased a large number of Chinese paintings and calligraphy from Beijing and Shanghai and later befriended the artists. Notable works include Zhang Daqian’s Red Plum Blossom and Huang Binhong’s Mountain Scenery After Rain. ‘Ms. Wen Yu's Collection of Drafts and Sketches of Han Yutang’ features over 100 precious drafts and sketches by Pu Ru created during his teachings in Hong Kong, preserved by Ms. Wen Yu who used to be Pu Ru’s student in the city. ‘A Ji’s Collection’, ‘Mok Eden’s Collection of Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy’ and ‘Shao Xue Zhai Collection’ are also worthy of attention.
Classical Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy will also feature works with well-known inscriptions and clear provenances. Among them ‘Wan Xue Shu Wu’s Collection of Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy’ features an important Hong Kong private collection of works mostly inscribed by well-known artists in Shanghai, including Dong Qichang’s Calligraphy in Running Script and Zhang Wentao’s Poems, Calligraphy and Landscape. ‘Song Yuan Ge’s Collection of Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy’ presents Qin Dashi’s Calligraphy in Four Different Fonts that is also a symbol of the dedication and achievements of traditional Chinese art. As all the spectacular pieces are to be presented, a visual feast is sure to be expected.
ASIAN 20TH CENTURY AND CONTEMPORARY ART
This Spring, China Guardian (HK) is delighted to present a series of symbolic masterpieces by exceptionally important Asian modern and contemporary artists. The selection includes Yoshitomo Nara’s Sprout, also known as ‘Daughter of the Earth’, which appears at auction for the first time as a milestone that best represents the critical turning point of Nara’s life and artistic career; Cai Guoqiang’s An Ancient Tale: Kuafu Running after the Sun which is the very first attempt of the artist’s Cosmic Adventure; And Li Chen’s Dragon-Riding Buddha, a 330cm-high sculpture by the renowned contemporary artist, which is the largest sculpture by the artist that has ever appeared at auction. China Guardian (HK) is also delighted to present the special feature of ‘Art Masters of 20th Century - Shiy De Jinn with His Teachers and Peers’, in memorial of the 40th Anniversary of Shiy’s Death. With exquisite artworks by 14 artists including Lin Fengmian, Wu Guanzhong, Zai Wou-Ki, Chu Teh-Chun, Chao Chun-Hsiang and Ku Fu-Sheng. the curated feature aims to depict the ‘Golden Era’ that is pivotal to the development of Chinese modern art.
This season, we are honoured to present Yoshitomo Nara’s Sprout, an outstanding artwork that brings together many of the typical elements that made the two series of ‘Sprout the Ambassador’ and ‘Night Walker’ so popular. The work was completed in 2011, in a time when the artist’s career was at a crossroads - Asian 20th Century and Contemporary Art since his homeland was severely damaged during 2011’s tragic ‘3.11’ Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan, Nara began to question and reflect on the meaning of his art - ‘Sprout’ thereby was born, as Nara shifted his focus and chose to work on art that brings happiness. The painting was exhibited at Yoshitomo Nara’s Solo Exhibition ‘A Bit Like You and Me’ at the Yokohama Museum of Art and the Aomori Museum of Art in 2012, and was later collected by an important private Asian collector, boasting impeccable provenance and underscoring the fact that its availability this Spring offers art collectors a fleetingly rare opportunity.
Painted on a wooden panel, a material which echoes the reconstruction after the catastrophe, Nara’s iconic big-headed girl stands in an indomitable position against the pure skin-coloured background, just like a statue of female saints in medieval churches. The seemingly evil or rebellious little girl has disappeared. Instead, she is taking care of a seedling, with straight long legs that appear to grow almost directly out of the ground, as if absorbing the essence of the Earth, Sun and Moon, like an ever-growing ‘Daughter of the Earth’. Nara arranges the figure with geometric structures of circles, squares, trapezoid and rectangles, creating a unique composition that so far exists in only three of his pieces. Her full-moon resplendent pink face and the downward pointing eyelashes are ingeniously organised to highlight changes in thickness, an allusion to the emotions bubbling underneath the tranquil exterior. Echoing with the seedling which signifies ‘rebirth’ and ‘hope’, the figure seeks to convey the heart-warming power of introspection with its dazzling brilliance.
Pondside Households (Hometown) was created in 1996, during a period when Wu Guanzhong’s artistic achievements and international reputation has reached the peak. The work was featured in the Complete Collection of Wu Guanzhong, and was also selected as one of the 68 oil paintings included in the Album of Wu Guanzhong 60s-90s. As one of the only seven Wu Guanzhong’s oil paintings under the theme of ‘Hometown’, the painting best represents Wu’s art in the 1990s, from which the importance and representation of this work are self-evident.
Wu endorsed the title Hometown at the back of the canvas, expressing the eternal gratefulness of his roots. With minimalist, purified colour blocks and simple lines, the work depicts a Jiangnan village by the lake, where trees on the right stretches out and upwards like an elegant dancer, alongside the salient old buildings of black tiles and white walls. The artist separates the painting into two parts along the centerline by a circular structure of the embankment, forming a Tai Chi style yin-and-yang pattern corresponding to the reality and the reflections - the sequence of the buildings symbolizes unity, while the combination of the ring structure and the water flow composes a metaphor of endless succession of life and growth. In the overall composition, a peaceful and delightful visual rhythm is introduced, which reveals the feelings of “Spring breeze ripples the old waters as before” as in Tang Poetry, just like an everlasting love letter to the artist’s hometown.
As the first Chinese contemporary artist to be included in American art history textbooks, Cai Guoqiang is celebrated for his radical experimentation with materials - especially gunpowder, which he has used to ignite his drawings. This Spring we are proud to present the very first attempts of Cai Guoqiang’s Cosmic Adventure - An Ancient Tale: Kuafu Running After the Sun, one of Cai’s earliest works under the theme of traditional Chinese mythology, and the third largest painting of Cai’s first six paintings of gunpowder on canvas. It is the quality that makes the painting a museum-standard artwork. As a crucial starting point for Cai’s painting with gunpowder, the painting manifests his reflections on life dimensions, cosmic space, as well as one’s personal ‘essence, energy and spirit’. The painting was taken by Cai Guoqiang with him to Japan to 1986, and then to New York in 1995, which demonstrates the value of the work for himself. It was published in ‘Meishu’ Magazine in October 1987, and later became part of the collection of an important Asian art collector in the past 20 years. The horizon runs vertically, and a dazzling man runs after the sun in the mist, in a space that is full of tension with the traces of the explosion - for thirty years the painting remains unparalleled.
21.01.76 was created in a significant year when Zao Wou-Ki had remarkable accomplishments in both his life and his career, when his art has transformed by regaining the elements of Chinese ink during this critical period. With the use of colours of orange, pea green, bright yellow and black which are considered as symbols of ‘life and hope’, Zao created a dream-like landscape that connects the reality with the imagination, delivering his understanding of vitality and a flourishing life.
Colours assemble in 21.01.76, as Zao Wou-Ki boldly divides the image with a bubble-like texture on the right, the heavy colours that assemble the images of rocks and waves on the lower left, and a splash of blue colour that refers to the sky on the top, presenting a composition that is totally different from those works of his ‘Hurricane’ series. He no longer condenses the energy in the middle of the canvas; instead, he diffuses the power, which demonstrates the result of his spiritual journey from ‘self-centeredness’ to ‘selflessness’. In contrast to the colour green in the foreground, the colour orange resembles the energy of sun-rising, which represents fearlessness and vigour. Widely appreciated by the academic circle, the work was included in three important catalogues of Zao Wou-Ki’s during 1970s and 1980s.
Following of completion of Avalokitesvara in Li Chen’s Energy of Emptiness Series (1998-2000), Dragon-Riding Buddha, completed in 2001, marks a crucial starting point of the artist’s Spiritual Journey through the Great Ether Series. Known for instilling contemporary elements in traditional Buddhist sculptures, Li Chen incorporates enormous energies and his unique interpretations of the Taoist presentations of ‘Qi’ to create large-scale sculptures that are infused with the gaze and disclosure of various phenomena in modern society. Li Chen’s 248cm-high sculpture of Dragon-Riding Buddha set a world record at China Guardian’s Autumn Auctions 2019, as it was sold for HK$ 11.19 million / US$ 1.43 million - This season, we are thrilled to showcase the highly-anticipated 330cm-high sculpture Dragon-Riding Buddha, which is the artist’s largest sculpture to ever appear at auction.
CERAMICS AND WORKS OF ART
The Ceramics and Works of Art Department will present a total of over 800 lots, including an eclectic array of ceramics, jades and treasures in six dedicated sales namely 'Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Part I: Jades', 'Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Part II: Works of Art', 'Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Part III: Ceramics', 'Masterpieces of Ancient Chinese Jades Part II: The Ju-Yi Scholar's Studio Collection' as well as 'Imperial Appreciation: Magnificent Treasures from the Court'. With prestigious provenance, these exceptional examples of Chinese antiquities carefully selected by our team of specialists aim to exemplify the tremendous artistic and cultural achievements of China.
JEWELLERY WATCHES AND LUXURY GOODS
Kicking off the Spring Auctions 2021, Magnificent Jewellery Selling Exhibition "LUMIERE" features over 90 pieces of branded jewels and jadeite during 19 and 31 March at China Guardian (HK) G Art Gallery. All offered at a friendly price point, the stunning selection of rare and exquisite treasures continues to provide collectors and gemstones lovers a new access to the bespoke and premium shopping experience, and invites everyone to join us on this luxurious journey with the spectaculars works.
21 Apr (Wednesday)
10 am: Masterpieces of Ancient Chinese Jades Part II: The Ju-Yi Scholar’s Studio Collection
2 pm: Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Part I: Jades
5:30 pm: Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Part II: Works of Art
22 Apr (Thursday)
10:30 am: Fine Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy
23 Apr (Friday)
10:30 am : Asian 20th Century and Contemporary Art
3 pm: Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Part III: Ceramics
6 pm: Imperial Appreciation: Magnificent Treasures from the Court
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